Shoshone Falls


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Shoshone Falls,

212 ft (65 m) high, flowing over a rim 900 ft (274 m) wide in the Snake River, S Idaho. Once a great spectacle, the falls have been reduced by irrigation projects upstream.
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Shaken, Moran may have sought solace in the Far West, for, in the summer of 1900, accompanied by Ruth, he journeyed to Shoshone Falls on the Snake River in Idaho.
When he returned to his studio, Moran began work on the last of his panoramic western landscapes, "Shoshone Falls on the Snake River." Like "Chasm of the Colorado," this work is a roiling, turbulent statement about the power of water.
When "Shoshone Falls" was shown in New York and later in Buffalo at the Pan-American Exposition, praise for the work was tempered by a critical assessment that found the artist to be of the "old guard." Art critic Charles Caffin may have spoken for many when he wrote in 1901 that, while Moran's painting was impressive and deserved praise, his preference no longer was for the "grand and panoramic in nature." Never again would Moran attempt a painting on the scale of "Shoshone Falls." Time and the market had changed.